One of the poorest countries in the world is facing one of its worst humanitarian crises in 20 years: a severe drought in the Southern African country of Mozambique.
The El Niño-related drought has left many farming families without resources to feed their families, as the conditions have ruined their harvest. The rainfall season ended in March, resulting in poor or non-existent crop production. Thousands of children are bearing the consequences of this unfolding hunger crisis.
An estimated 1.5 million people are currently in need of humanitarian assistance, with approximately 423,000 receiving food assistance between April and May 2016 according to the UN Resident Coordinator for Mozambique. The government of Mozambique reports concerns of malnutrition, especially in children. That’s where Stop Hunger Now’s partnership with the global humanitarian organization Adventist Development and Relief Agency (ADRA) comes in.
Stop Hunger Now school meals are guaranteed daily nourishment for many of the children in affected families. Through our partnership with ADRA, Stop Hunger Now is helping to meet the basic nutrition needs of children affected by the drought.
How Stop Hunger Now is Responding: 1,425,600 Meals to be Shipped
This fall, Stop Hunger Now will ship five containers carrying 1,425,600 meals. The meals, which are being packaged by volunteers in Atlanta, Richmond, Raleigh and Philadelphia, will support drought relief efforts in two districts of Mozambique.
Through this relief effort, Stop Hunger Now will reach 9,756 school-age children. Children in 23 schools will receive one lunch each day for 60 days. These meals will help boost attendance and reduce dropout rates.
Stop Hunger Now is one of several humanitarian agencies, including the World Food Programme, who will be assisting 100,000 students under emergency school feeding. We don’t stop after our food is delivered. This December, Stop Hunger Now’s Monitoring and Evaluation team will join ADRA and other relief agencies on the ground to evaluate the relief efforts.
El Niño-induced drought conditions have persisted across much of Southern Africa, and the impact on education is dire. School attendance rates have dropped as many children are now relied on to look for food or work to support their families. Empty stomachs have left other children too weak to attend classes or without the ability to concentrate and further academic progress even when they are able to attend. The Adventist Development and Relief Agency (ADRA), Stop Hunger Now, and Islamic Relief are partnering to launch a school lunch program that targets 23 primary schools in Mozambique that have been affected by the drought. This initiative will help ensure that the 9,756 students from these schools will receive 1 lunch per day for 3 months until the peak of the drought is expected to pass. This partnership is the beginning of a larger school feeding initiative that these three organizations are planning for the 2017 school year in several drought-affected African countries.
– Lynn Boyd, Country Director ADRA Mozambique
Our response to the drought in Mozambique is just one example of how Stop Hunger Now rises to provides emergency relief. Just last week, we joined 30 fellow members of InterAction — the largest U.S. alliance of international NGOs—in signing a three-year pledge to collectively invest $1.2 billion in global humanitarian assistance efforts. The need is strong: in recent months we have received requests to provide assistance for floods, droughts, health outbreaks, and conflict from Uganda, South Sudan, Mozambique, Nigeria and India. Our Monitoring & Evaluation team evaluates the requests and determines where we have partners on the ground that can assist. In the coming months, we will also respond to the ongoing health crisis in Old Fangak, South Sudan by providing specialized therapeutic food to treat malnutrition.
Our goal is to build our emergency relief fund so we have the resources to respond quickly to crises like this. Click here to learn more about how you can contribute.